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NHS trust picks up £400m Midlands Met Hospital bill

By Richard Guttridge | Smethwick | Health | Published:

Bosses of collapsed construction giant Carillion should face a criminal probe, union bosses have said.

Work is back under way at the Midland Met site

Unite’s call comes as Sandwell Hospital Trust boss Toby Lewis revealed it would cost £400 million to complete the hospital in Grove Lane, Smethwick – and his trust would be picking up the bill.

Work to repair existing parts of the hospital, after it was abandoned for nine months, has started.

The Midland Met was set to have been completed this year but due to initial delays and the fact the site has substantially deteriorated since work ceased when Carillion collapsed, there will be a more than three year delay in the project.

The original budget for the project was £350 million of which Carillion had already received £205 million before its collapse. The £400 million bill faced by the trust is to complete the hospital and also the cost of the work to reopen wards at City hospital, which were due to be demolished.

Unite assistant general secretary Howard Beckett said: “These figures are truly staggering. It is outrageous that the taxpayer is going to have to pay more to get the project completed than the entire original budget.

“In September we called for a criminal investigation into the directors and managers responsible for Carillion’s collapse and I am renewing that call.”

Unite regional officer Su Lowe added: “Carillion’s directors distorted their accounts and continued to trade when the company was insolvent.

“Taxpayers are being forced to pay to clear up the mess, if that is not criminal behaviour, it certainly should be.”

Richard Guttridge

By Richard Guttridge
Chief Reporter - @RichG_star

Chief Reporter for the Express & Star, based in Wolverhampton.

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